Imago Reperta

Poem by Wilmer Mills

<i>The Unicorn,</i> from the Great Hall of Bulls, c. 15,000 BC

Who isn’t fascinated by Lascaux,

The earliest of French impressionism?

—Sophisticated renderings that glow

And gallop in our lamps’ anachronism;

Its zodiacs of animals still dance

As symbols of things we dimly recollect:

The horse, the hunt, the after-dinner trance.—


Did they envision us? Do we suspect,

In the long thaw, that undiscovered caves

Contain more murals underground, telling

The same histoire along forgotten naves?


I close my eyes, and even more compelling

Are passages of thought I’ve yet to find

As painted dreams and prayers inside my mind.